Former Philadelphia mob boss “Skinny” Joey Merlino is poised to skate from trouble yet again, this time owing to FBI buffoonery.
Merlino and nearly 50 other mafia members from 4 major crime families were arrested as part of a major racketeering bust in August of 2016.
It was quite a coup for the FBI, given that the mobster is the natural enemy of the G-man, but it may have all been for naught since case information was leaked by agents to a Mafia fan blog and wiretaps carried by an informant critical to the case were inexplicably misplaced.
It’s hard to imagine how the feds could have bungled this so badly.
Both mishaps can be traced to three bumbling investigators who are as-yet unnamed.
The inept trio allowed information on the case to fall into the hands of Gang Land News, a mafia current events blog.
More shocking still, in a play reminiscent of recent dramas from our redoubtable president Donald Trump, the agents also found a way to make alleged wiretaps disappear—in this case, belonging to the prosecution’s chief witness, John Rubio.
Also caught up in the bust (and likely to be freed as well) was alleged New York capo Pasquale “Patsy” Parrello, as well as other Boca Raton associates of Merlino, such as Craig Bagon, Bradley Sirkin and Frank “Harpo” Trapani.
Each of the 46 accused was staring down at least one racketeering charge with a maximum sentence of 20 years. More comprehensively, their laundry list of alleged plots includes healthcare fraud, arson, extortion, assault and the sale of handguns and $3 million worth of untaxed cigarettes.
According to the indictment, it was Boca Raton’s Merlino that “supervised and controlled members of the enterprise engaged in illegal schemes.”
On review of the results, one can’t help but conclude that sometimes, crime does pay. So does luck